Another busy week at the Capitol and much to share in this week’s newsletter, so let’s cut right to the chase:
Democracy denied on Dems’ bad energy bill
Whether it’s at home, at the office or just about everywhere else we visit on a given day, we take for granted that, when we flip a switch, the lights are going to come on. We are able to take that simple act for granted because we have had cheap, abundant, reliable energy for as long as any of us can remember.
But that’s about to change.
Gov. Tim Walz and his liberal cohorts are ramming through their “Blackout Bill,” a proposal which received just one single House committee hearing before House Democrats passed it in a vote of the full body last night. This is breakneck speed for what is, quite frankly, the most impactful legislation this chamber has ever considered since the founding of our state.
In particular, this bill (H.F. 7) extends and increases Minnesota’s renewable energy standard to 55 percent by 2035 and requires electric utilities in the state to generate or acquire 100 percent carbon-free energy by 2040 – just 17 years from now. House Democrats are rolling back cheap, abundant energy in order to transition Minnesota to unproven technologies that are intermittent and weather-dependent.
The kicker: Electric bills will go up a projected $1,600 per year per household, and Minnesotans will face, on average, overall cost increases up to $3,900 per year.
When I say this is the “Blackout Bill,” it is not mere rhetoric; I am not kidding. There have been massive failures of the electric grid everywhere policies such as this have been tried.
Great Britain is looking at planned power outages. Germany is looking at shutting off power to their EV charging stations and their heat pumps because their grid is on the edge of collapse. This could serve as a harbinger for Minnesota, where Democrats are mandating a technology that exceeds our grid’s capacity by forcing electric vehicles onto our state.
Then there’s California, which has a zero-emissions standard deadline of 2045. Not to be outdone, Minnesota Democrats arbitrarily set their target for 2040 – five years earlier. It’s as if we can claim some sort of prize for outdoing California, which has the highest average electricity price in the 48 contiguous states.
California also has the highest price on gas and diesel, raising costs on virtually all the goods you use each and every day. The bottom line is this bill would be make life prohibitively more expensive in Minnesota if it were to become law.
This bill is now in the hands of the Senate after House Democrats approved it in the House. I urge you to reach out to your legislator(s) and ask them to stop this Blackout Bill before it becomes a Minnesota nightmare.
Extreme abortion bill No. 2 (it’s even worse)
Just last week House Democrats approved a bill to make Minnesota’s abortion law among the most extreme on this planet by legalizing abortions at any time throughout a pregnancy and without any guardrails.
Guess what? They’re back at it again. In fact, a bill they’ve been pushing through committees this week is even more extreme and even more out of touch than last week’s proposal.
The Democrats’ latest abortion bill (H.F. 91) is even more threatening to the health and safety of mothers and unborn children, removing any remaining guardrails for abortions. This includes repealing the Born Alive Infant Protection Act. It also strikes any abortion reporting requirements left in place from the Doe v Minnesota opinion over the summer.
Stay tuned for more on this.
STMA education forum
It was my pleasure to attend a legislative forum Tuesday at STMA High School and discuss bills I have authored to provide local schools with fairer state funding.
Area students continue to be deprived educational opportunities because local districts have been at the bottom of the state’s per pupil education funding formula for years. In response, I have authored one bill to deliver general education disparity aid and another to establish a minimum revenue guarantee.
Local students are placed at a disadvantage because the state’s funding formula favors metro and suburban area school districts, plain and simple. We owe it to our children to level the playing field and help them achieve both in the classroom and in life. That is what I am working to accomplish with these bills.
It was an honor to accept a pair of legislative appointments recently, including with the Council for Minnesotans of African Heritage and the Legislative Energy Commission. The latter could prove to be a good venue to advocate for the affordable, reliable energy Minnesotans need instead of the unaffordable, unreliable and unsafe package mentioned earlier in this email.
More town hall meetings
Thank you to everyone who made last weekend’s legislative town hall meetings in St. Michael and Otsego resoundingly successful. It was great to see so many people enthusiastically in attendance. We have four more meetings scheduled for this weekend and I hope you can join us. Again, these meetings are good opportunities to share thoughts on whatever issues are important to you and discuss the 2023 session. There’s no need to RSVP and the meetings will be casual.
Here’s the remaining schedule:
Friday January 27
Saturday January 28
Watch for more from the House soon and, as always, your input is welcome.